To identify the 100 safest cities in the country, we analyzed FBI crime report statistics and population data. The FBI data is from 2020 (the most recent year for which data was available). Our rankings were based solely on crime data; no other factors were included.
We started by pulling every city listed in the FBI’s 2020 Offenses Known to Law Enforcement database. We removed all cities with a population under 2,500 (rural/small town) and all cities under the median population of the remaining cities, which was 10,779. Cities that fell below the population threshold were excluded, along with cities that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI.
In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Violent crimes are defined in the UCR Program as those offenses that involve force or threat of force.
In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, property crime includes the offenses of burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. Larceny-theft offenses involve the taking of money or property (like pick-pocketing), but with no force or threat of force against the victims.
We looked at the number of reported violent crimes in each city and the number of reported property crimes. To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. Both violent and property crime numbers were weighted equally. We also standardized violent and property crime for each state before weighting.
Consult our full methodology to learn more about how we rank the Safest Cities.
Whether your city made our list or not, we encourage everyone to be proactive about home security. One of the best ways to stop a burglary before it happens is to add a home security system.